Special Concerns


Special Concerns

We see a lot of students up here at High Trails, and every one of them is, in their own way, unique. If your student/child will need some special attention while they are up here, please start by reading through all of the below information. If you still have questions or would like to get in touch with us about a special situation, please fill out the Special Concerns Form at the bottom of this page.

Aides, 504 Plans, IEP's, IHP's

504 Plans, the ADA

A major provision of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794) requires school districts to provide all students, regardless of disability, with a free appropriate public education. This provision, found in Section 504, applies to any condition – physical, mental, or emotional – that might interfere with a student’s ability to receive an education in a public school classroom, subject to external review. 504 Plans, named for that section of the Act, are comprehensive plans created collaboratively by parents, nurses, school administrators, and other interested parties to address the student’s individual needs.

Upon contact and request by a school representative, High Trails supports all school 504 Plans. We will adjust our program to reflect the changes required by the 504 Plan that the elementary school has enacted. Some examples of pertinent 504 plans are a Food Allergy Management Plan and a Diabetes Management Plan. If multiple schools are at High Trails, there is a possibility that a 504 Plan with one school will affect the experience of another school.

The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Title III does apply to High Trails, and we have designed our programs to support these requirements. The ADA requires that child care providers not discriminate against persons with disabilities on the basis of disability. This, in effect, requires that we provide children with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in our wilderness based program.

IHP’s and IEP’s

Individualized Healthcare Plans and Individualized Education Plans are two other means that allow formal documentation on how a student’s needs should be met. If a school has this in place for a student, High Trails will, within our means, work to meet the needs of these documents.

Students Needing An Aide

High Trails welcomes students with physical, mental, emotional, behavioral, or medical disabilities; however, we are not a focused care facility. Should a student need or have an aide while at school, they should have an aide while at camp. Should a child not be able to dress, feed, bathe or use the restroom by themselves, they should have an aide while at camp.

Wheelchairs are possible, but in any natural outdoor environment they present their own inherent challenges; an aide or an understanding and flexible cabin/trail group of students is required.

Should a student have a condition, medical or otherwise, that requires consistent one on one attention, they should have an aide while at camp. Should a child not be able to behave themselves in programs and classes, they should have an aide. If one student, whatever the situation or background, consistently detracts from the experience of the remainder of the students, an aide is required to mitigate this circumstance. We welcome all aides endorsed and provided by the school administration and teachers.

Unless otherwise arranged with the school, aides will be housed in a cabin along with the student they are assisting. High Trails reserves the right to request a school district approved 504 Plan for the care of students needing an aide.

Our Menu

Allergies, Food Preferences

Skin Allergies

Insect bites, poison ivy, latex, and other allergens can produce a reaction such as localized redness and swelling or lead to anaphylactic shock. Should your student have a serious allergy, you must send an Epi-Pen or the appropriately prescribed medication with them to camp.

Food Allergies

The most common food allergies are peanut, milk, egg, tree nut, seafood, shellfish, soy, gluten, and wheat. We do not serve seafood or shellfish (other than tuna fish), and there are simple food alternatives available at every meal that do not have milk and eggs in them.

If your child cannot eat the foods on our menu, or if they cannot eat foods labeled “prepared in a facility that processes milk”, “prepared in a facility that processes eggs”, “prepared in a facility that processes nuts”, or anything along this line, we suggest you send up your own food.

Because we operate a large kitchen we cannot cater our food operations or food servings on an individual basis. **** The exception to this is if your child has a current 504 Plan in effect with your elementary school. In this case, we will adjust our program to reflect the changes required by the 504 Plan that the elementary school has enacted.

Peanut Allergies

We do not serve peanut products at High Trails. While we do not serve peanuts or peanut butter in program, bear in mind that:

  1. Our menu includes foods processed in a facility that processes peanuts.
  2. We use peanut butter alternative spreads in our sandwiches, commonly known by their brand names of Sun Butter or Wow Butter.
  3. We occasionally use tree nuts like almonds, cashews, and walnuts in adult/vegetarian meal options.

If your child has a severe peanut allergy that requires the use of medication as a treatment, please let us know ahead of time.

We do not offer a “Nut Free” environment at High Trails. **** The exception to this is if your child has a current 504 Plan in effect with your elementary school. In this case, we will adjust our program to reflect the changes required by the 504 Plan that the elementary school has enacted. For example, if your elementary school is “Nut Free”, we will adjust our program and reflect this change during your stay with us.

PLEASE NOTE: If your student has a severe allergy they should bring an Epi-Pen or similar emergency medication. The Epi-Pen will be immediately available 24 hours a day. In case of an anaphylactic emergency, all members of our staff are qualified in first aid and are trained in recognizing allergic reactions and administering Epi-Pens. High Trails maintains its own supply of epinephrine for allergic emergencies.

Food Preferences

Upon notification, High Trails provides options to support a vegetarian diet. If your child needs other accommodations due to personal preference, you are welcome to send up your own food.

Sending Up Your Own Food?

If your child can’t eat the food on our menu, we are happy to microwave any prepackaged and prepared foods provided they are simple, easy to manage, and you have notified us in advance. Our suggestion is to go through our menu and model your prepackaged meals after our meals. If we’re having pancakes for breakfast and due to a gluten allergy you can’t have these, you can precook some of your own pancakes and freeze them in a plastic container. We’ll grab this container, heat it up in a microwave, and serve it to your child. If we’re having pizza for dinner and your child can’t eat this, pick out an acceptable pizza in the frozen section of the supermarket. We’ll cook and serve it.

If you are planning on sending your own food up, you MUST let us know ahead of time…please fill out the below Special Concerns Form.

Please realize that we’re cooking for upwards of 175 people, so if you’re sending up your own food, you’ve got to make it easy and simple for us. One to two course meals labeled and prepackaged in plastic, microwaveable containers is just fine and we can make certain your child gets their food along with everyone else. If you send up your own food that is more complicated than this, or you don’t let us know ahead of time, it’s very possible that we won’t have the time to prepare the food for your child until after everyone else has been served. If you have questions, please let us know ahead of time.

Parents!!! Please do not send up any food that contains PEANUTS.


Diabetes is a common situation at High Trails; please don’t let this condition adversely affect your choice to attend outdoor science school. Students need to understand their diabetic condition, how it affects their eating and exercise actions, and be able to communicate their condition to the adults around them. Diabetic students should be able to test their own blood levels and administer insulin injections. With doctor, parent, and school approval we can assist and administer insulin injections.

High Trails will oversee and assist in all diabetic care processes, provided that the student meets the above conditions. High Trails reserves the right to request a school district approved 504 Plan for the care of Diabetic Students.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have a diabetic student attending High Trails, you will need three (3) forms: Health Consent Form and Medication Form (standard and provided by your school) and a Diabetic Management Plan.

We cannot care for your diabetic student without a Diabetic Management Plan

Bedwetting / Incontinence

This is very common in students that attend camp. Should you have this concern, here’s what we can do to make the situation a good one:

  • Prevention: some simple preventative measures we can take include limiting liquid intake after dinner, waking the student up in the middle of the night to use the restroom, and placing them on the bottom bunk to make it easier to get out of bed and use the restroom. Night time sleeping aids like pull-ups are good options as well.
  • Discretion: we can discretely pull your student aside and talk with them about the potential problem before it happens, so that they feel comfortable enough to confide in their instructor should they need help.
  • If incontinence does occur, we’ll discretely bag up the affected clothing / bags and wash them during the day when the group is out of the cabins. By the time anyone returns to the cabins, we’ll have the cleaned items back in time for bed.


Special Concerns Form

All student related communication must first be initiated in a written fashion via this form. This allows us to manage large call volumes, maintain a high standard of care, and properly keep track of the many students and situations that find their way up to High Trails. Upon receipt of this form, we will follow up with you and start up a good dialogue to make certain that your child has both an educational and a safe experience at High Trails.

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